There are three mitzvahs that are unique to a woman. Hafrashat challah has the unique ability to bring G-d's special blessing into a Jewish home. From the time I got married I took on the mitzvah of baking and separating Challah every Shabbos. For the past several years I have joined with a group of 40 women literally from all across the world who commit each week to baking Challah, and then devote our prayers while separating Challah to the merit of a person in need of extra prayers. This could be for a recovery from an illness, to find a spouse, or to facilitate having a child. It is always a wonderful feeling when the woman who is in charge of our group announces an engagement or a birth of someone we had previously baked and davened for.
When my children were little, they always loved coming home from school eruv Shabbos to smell all the different aromas that hit them as they ran through the front door. When my children were little, I went through a phase of "theme Challahs!" There was the iguana challah for my son Effie, a turtle Challah for my mother, and even a palm tree challah one Shabbos before leaving for Hawaii....that was not a good idea because although it looked amazing, green challah palm trees is extremely unappetizing! . But now as the kids are grown and mostly out of the house, I love making these perfectly beautiful looking braided Challah which really look impressive to people over 10 years old! Each one, whether it be the large Challah or the little Challettes, look perfect every time! Try them and I guarantee you will love them....and if you ask me nicely enough, I may even share my Challah recipe with you!
These blankets last! Here is baby Rivka, the new little sister of the baby pictured above, laying on the same blanket two years later!